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Passport 2: The Sequel February 8, 2016

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.

My passport expires in November. It’s on my mind, because I know there are places that one can’t go if one is within six months of one’s passport expiring. It’s also on my mind because I recently read an article in the New York Times warning of the expected flood of renewals in 2006 and 2007 because of 2007’s Western Hemisphere Initiative, which required passports for Americans returning by air from Mexico, Canada, the Caribbean, and Bermuda. Millions of people got passports that year, and those millions are up for renewal. The article suggested early renewal and noted that turnaround time is about six weeks, up from two.

That makes me nervous.

You may recall that I don’t like the idea of not having a passport at the ready, even though I apparently have always let my passport expire in the past (not this time! I swear!). Since that last neurotic missive about my passport, I happy to report that I did at last leave the country (London! Paris!), but it took 2½ years after that post. And I still haven’t gotten to Montreal.

And in a way, it’s Montreal that makes me feel unwilling to go passportless for six weeks. Even though I haven’t been there since my twenty-first birthday, even though it’s only four hours away, what if I want to go there at the very point at which my passport is not with me?

And should Tim and I renew our passports together or sequentially? Last time we clearly did it together, as they expire the same date. We should do it that way again, no doubt. But it makes me even more nervous to think that neither one of us would have the option of leaving the country.

Truly, not having a passport is less about being able to take a vacation and more about feeling trapped. I’m someone who always wants an escape route clearly in view. Without a passport, I’ll feel a little less land of the free and a little more home of the brave.

But I better embrace that home-of-the-brave soon.

Oh, crap. Now I need another photo of myself.


1. Mali - February 19, 2016

I love this. I totally understand the fear of being trapped. Currently, at least, my incarceration on these islands is financial, not through the lack-of-passports.

2. guacachocolatte - February 19, 2016

I think passport photos are one of those occasions when you can play around with making yourself look as bad as possible (although that seems to happen without much effort–it’s amazing what not smiling can do to one’s appearance).

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